Monday, May 24, 2010

Jennifer Knapp

A month or so ago my husband sent me a link to an interview where Jennifer Knapp comes out of the closet.
I'm not one of those bible thumping, homosexuals are evil, let's burn them at the stake kind of christians. I do believe that homosexuality is a sin, but I feel that it is no more than any other sin be it lying, stealing, or getting drunk on Friday and rolling into church on Sunday like nothing's up. I feel like this sin has become fashionable to hate on like drinking in the 20's and Satanism in the 70's. Anyone remember how EVIL Ouiga boards used to be? I think they are still evil, but they aren't in vogue anymore as a sin so we as a christian culture have moved on to the next big thing, Homosexuality. Who knows what the next big sin will be?

But I digress.
Jennifer's music touched me very deeply throughout my adult life. I was introduced to her in college by my roommate (who ironically enough turned out to be a lesbian as well). It was possibly the one good thing that roommate did for me.
Jennifer's music was so raw and pure and from a place very personal. I struggled for years with looking and being the "perfect christian". I didn't read my bible everyday, get excited about God or raise my hands in church like everyone else. I lusted after my boyfriend. I didn't think the occasional drink or cigarette was wrong. I flopped back and forth between thinking I was "saved" and thinking I needed to be "saved" for many years. In this way I felt very connected to Jennifer through her music, because I felt she felt the same way. She wasn't perfect, she didn't pretend to be. She had moments where she messed up royally and had to ask for forgiveness and felt dirty (Refine me, Undo me) and other moments where she felt secure in her faith and in God's mercy (His Grace is Sufficient, In the Name). I went on this journey with her and she with me.
So, to hear she is gay doesn't shock me for some reason. Maybe it's because I found out about my roommate years ago and I associated the two together. Or maybe it's because it doesn't matter. Sin is sin. And all her songs were about struggling with sin nature. But it does sadden me. Not because she is gay, but because she's unapologetic about it. She's disheartened with the church (which I completely understand) but she doesn't see her lifestyle as contradictory to what God's Word says. I struggle with things all the time that I know are wrong, but I'm not sure I've ever engaged in sin and wholeheartedly believe that the sin is not sin. That being said, I have knowingly ignored God's word and engaged in things I shouldn't knowing full well they are not what God wants me to be doing.
So I cannot in any way judge her. I have an enormously huge plank in my eye that I struggle to remove and cannot say anything about anyone as long as that is there. And that won't be until this life is over so by then it won't matter will it?
But I do feel for her. I think she is just mislead and the church's reaction sadly will be to stone her instead of love her back into the fold.
Why are we so quick to forgive a pastor who commits adultery but yet cannot love someone who struggles with homosexuality? What is wrong with us as a body of Christ?
So Jennifer, know that I still love you, will still listen to Kansas and The Way I Am and continue to feel your music as deeply as I ever did.
I don't know if I will purchase your new album. I just don't know at this point. I grapple with the fors and againsts it and at the moment neither side has won.
But I look forward to the day you come full circle.